Being busy without being productive

Oluwagbemi Amojo Written by Oluwagbemi · 1 min read >

Sitting with the laptop for several hours yet achieving nothing is something I am accustomed to. I wonder why I only complete so little of the so much I planned to do at the end of the day. Then I asked myself, “are you busy, or you are busy doing nothing?”

There is a difference between productivity and being busy. There are several reasons why one can be active without high yields. Some of them are:

Not planning

The big problem we might face is due to our inability to plan. We pile up projects/assignments without creating to-do lists. Hence it becomes a challenge to manage all that we piled up.

Distractions from the internet

For me, it is soccer news. I am working through something one minute, and the next minute, it’s some Manchester City football news. Considering I intend to spend 2 hours on an assignment, taking 30 minutes to read soccer news is equivalent to 25% wasted time.

Chatting while it at

Sometimes we chat away the time while working, reading or completing a task. Talking away 2 minutes of every 5 minutes means 40% of the time is wasted. It is crucial to set boundaries when at a task and focus on what we need to do

Social Media/Smartphone

While the smartphone can be an excellent tool for enhancing productivity, it becomes a distraction tool also. Seemingly short moments between tasks amount to a significant number eventually, and this affects productivity altogether. Limiting the time spent on the smartphone while trying to work helps achieve productivity at a better rate.

Lack of disconnect from the workload

Oooo yeah, it is essential to disconnect from work. The brain can only concentrate for a particular number of hours; hence it is nice to take a break. Vacations should be vacations helping to detach totally from work. We should try to unplug entirely and disconnect from the entire job and gather the energy to reengage.

Lack of work-life balance

“You will never feel delighted by work until you are satisfied by life.”

Heather Schuck, The Working Mom Manifesto

Challenges of the real-life are enough for an individual, let alone the challenges of work. There has to be a balance between work and one’s life for productivity. Having to juggle the challenges of your life with academics or work might eventually affect both.

Too many priorities

Having too many priorities at the same time is synonymous with being disorganised.

“When you have too many top priorities, you effectively have no top priorities.”

Stephen Covey

It is vital to prioritise what matters in the bid to schedule things for the best results.

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